Principal Allen's Weekly Newsletter

September 23 , 2019

Dear Spicewood Elementary Parents & Community Members,

I would like to thank our PTA, Adventure Dash Chair Mrs. Doyle, and volunteers for a remarkable fundraiser. A total of $64,030 was raised and Spicewood Elementary PTA will net nearly $52,000!!! Since students met their fundraiser goals, Ms. Cruz will be eating a scrumptious bug on Thursday and I will wear the costume chosen by students on Friday! I would also like to thank Mr. Hall and all Watch Dog Dads who helped make the Breakfast with Dads a success. Dads/ Father Figures, if you haven't already, I encourage you to join this incredible group We look forward to seeing Watch Dog Dads on campus and supporting our efforts to keep our school safe.

I hope you had a restful weekend, because this week will be full of campus events! I know students are excited that Book Fair begins this week! You can also come out to shop and have dinner at Food Truck & Book Fair night on Tuesday from 5PM-8PM. Spirit Night is Thursday at Main Event. 3rd grade teachers, Intervention teacher Mrs. Gutierrez, and I will be there! To top off the week, our annual Kids Invite Someone Special ( KISS ) Cookout is this Friday! I hope to see you there!

Last but not least I feel so fortunate to have a school counselor that truly cares about our students and works hard to build an effective counseling program. In the effort to keep parents informed, our amazing counselor, Mrs. Kentopp, will be contributing to my newsletter once a month. Please be sure to check out her post below.

Have a wonderful week!


Mrs. Allen

Spicewood Elementary Principal


Eating Lunch With Your Student

If you plan to have lunch with your student, please remember the following:

  • All visitors must sign in in the front office.
  • Visitors may only eat with their student. IF you want to invite your student's friend to have lunch with you, the student must have a written note from his/her parent that gives them permission to eat with you. This is to protect all students. Please be respectful towards our Cafeteria Monitors when they reinforce this expectation.
  • Parents may not sit at cafeteria tables with students- there is simply not enough room. You are welcome to enjoy lunch in the Atrium, picnic tables in the front and behind the school or at the tables in the main hallway.

Reporting Student Absences

When your child is absent for any reason that you must contact the office each day that your child is absent. Please notify the office of in one of the following ways:

Counselor's Corner

Hello Parents!

It has been such a joy to see how much your children have grown over the summer, and to get to know all the new students that have joined our Spicewood family this year! I have now visited every classroom and explained what the role of a school counselor is, and how and for what reasons students may request to see me. In case YOU have some of these same questions, please visit my website where you will find information on counseling services, community resources, and more.

This month’s guidance lesson focus is Emotional Regulation. From Kindergarten to 5th grade, we have explored how to recognize our emotions, how our brain responds to stress, and various strategies that can help us stay calm and in control. I often repeat the idea that all feelings are okay, but the way we respond to and act on our feelings can either help us learn and strengthen our relationships with others, or it can make our problems bigger and hurt our relationships with others. Starting in 2nd grade I use Dr. Dan Siegel’s hand model of the brain to talk about staying regulated and responding to our emotions. Here is a video you can watch if you would like to understand more about this concept (this video is great as well and has more kid friendly language), and here is a summary of some strategies you can try at home to encourage regulation, flexibility, and resilience in your child. I teach students various types of breathing and grounding exercises, but I also encourage them to come up with their own ways of keeping themselves emotionally regulated (some favorites from students this year include journaling, cuddling with a pet or stuffed animal, eating a healthy snack, using classroom “calm down” corners, doing wall push ups, and “hitting a pillow instead of my sister” <that one made me laugh, but hey whatever works!> ).

I also wanted to share that my goal this year is to increase the transparency of the Spicewood Counseling Program for parents. If you have a few minutes, I invite you to take a brief survey about your knowledge of the counseling program here.

Thank you!

Molly Kentopp, M.A., NCC

Spicewood Elementary School Counselor

Announcements from the Parent Teacher Association (PTA)

Destination Imagination at Spicewood Elementary - Parent Information Session

When? Monday, September 23rd, 5:30 -6:00PM

All DI parents are strongly encouraged to attend this informational meeting to ensure that they understand the goals and philosophy of the program, as well as to understand the “No Interference” rules that are integral to the program.

Parents interested in being a Team Manager are also required to attend a mandatory RRISD DI info session on Saturday, September 28, 2019 at Brushy Creek Elementary from 9-10 AM.


We are excited to host the Book Fair and Food Truck night on the 24th of September! In order to have a fun and safe evening, we need crossing guards. Please assist Sarah Belyi by signing up at


The annual KISS (Kids Invite Someone Special) Cookout will be held Friday, September 27th during your child’s lunchtime. You may invite grandparents, friends, neighbors, anyone that is someone special in your child's life. This will also be the last day of the Book Fair, which is always fun to walk through!

An order form will be sent in the electronic Friday Folder, which includes the menu and cost of lunch. If you are going to order lunch from the Spicewood Cafeteria please complete the form and return it to your oldest child’s teacher. You are welcome to bring your own food to the Cookout, in which case you don’t need to return the form.

For questions or to volunteer, please contact our KISS Cookout Chair Liz Chudej at

Volunteers Needed for Vision/Hearing Screening Volunteers

Hello Spicewood Volunteers! Nurse Sam will be conducting vision and hearing screenings on Thursday, October 3rd, and Friday October 4th. She would be so appreciative to have some parent volunteers to help organize the kids during the screening. Click below to sign up!

Vision/Hearing Screening Volunteers

Upcoming Campus Events & Dates

Monday, September 23

5:30PM - 6:00PM Destination Imagination Parent Information Session

Location: Inquiry Lab

Monday, September 23 - Friday, September 27

Book Fair

Location: Library

Tuesday, September 24

5:00PM -8:00PM Book Fair & Food Truck Night

Friday, September 27

KISS Cookout- (Check with your child's teacher for lunch time)

Thursday, Oct 3rd - Friday, Oct 4th

Vision and Hearing Screening for all students

Monday, October 14

Holiday - No School

Tuesday, October 15

No School - Parent Student Conferences

Monday, October 21

8:00AM - 8:30AM Principal's Pride Ceremony (Grade K-2)

Location: Cafeteria

Wednesday, October 23

8:00AM- 8:30AM Principal Pride Ceremony (Grade 3-5)

Location: Cafeteria

Thursday, October 24

7:45AM- 8:15AM General PTA Meeting

Location: Cafeteria

Helpful Attachments

Spicewood Elementary Vision Statement:

Spicewood aspires to be a caring community of innovative, globally minded citizens who take action.

Spicewood aspira a ser una comunidad solidaria de ciudadanos innovadores y de mentalidad global que actúen.